New Delhi: Portugese sensation Cristiano Ronaldo was crowned the FIFA best men’s “Player of the Year” for the second year running at the governing body’s annual ‘The Best’ football awards, held at the London Palladium theatre in London on Monday. Ronaldo in the process became only the second player after Lionel Messi to win the award five times.
The Real Madrid talisman has scored 44 goals in 48 appearances in 2017, including a double in the Champions League final against Juventus. The La Liga side won the title for a record 12th time and also became the first team to retain the trophy since it was revamed and renamed. Adding to it Los Blancos also won the La Liga for the first time since 2011 as Ronaldo walked away with a clean sweep over his nearest rival Lionel Messi having already earlier won the UEFA Player of the year. Argentine Lionel Messi came second while Neymar came third in a repeat of the 2016 awards standings.
Calling 2016 as one of his best years in this profession Ronaldo said, Thank you a lot to the guys for voting for me. Was to give a mention to Leo and Neymar to be here, Real Madrid supporters, my team-mates, my coach, my president – they support me all the year so I have to say thank you to them,” after the win.
Meanwhile, Netherlands international Lieke Martens was named FIFA’s best women Player of the Year. The 24-year-old scored three goals, helping her side win the 2017 UEFA Euro and duly won the tournament’s golden ball award.
Coaches of the respective teams also won the ‘Best Coach’ of the year awards. While Zinedine Zidane walked home with the awards into the men’s category, Holland manager Sarina Wiegman was need the best coach in the women’s category.
Arsenal star Olivier Giroud’s scorpion kick goal against Crystal Palace on New Year’s Day won the FIFA Puskas Award for the best goal, while Gianluigi Buffon was named best goalkeeper. The latter was also named in the FIFPro World XI, that also included the likes of Lionel Messi, Andre Iniesta, Dani Alves, Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr, Sergio Ramos, Bonucci, Marcelo, Modric and Toni Kroos.
Here is the list of the awards:
Best men’s player – Cristiano Ronaldo
Best women’s Player- Lieke Martens
Best goalkeeper- Gianluigi Buffon
Best men’s coach of the year – Zinedine Zidane
Best women’s coach of the year – Sarina Wiegman
FIFA Puskas awards – Olivier Giroud (goals against Scorpion Kick)
FIFA Pro World XI – Buffon, Marcelo, Ramos, Bonucci, Luka Modric, Iniesta, Kroos, Buffon, Messi, Neymar and Ronaldo.